Annika Lingk

Foto von Annika Lingk

Teacher

at the Protestant boarding school in Potsdam

 

What did you study?

Education science and German Linguistics (M.A.)

 

How did you get into your job?

The opportunities that education offered me were varied. However, precisely because of this, somehow nothing was really tangible for me. Pedagogy? What are you doing with it then? - That was a question I heard a lot. My answer to that was always that I can do a lot with it. I didn't have any more details in mind. I could imagine the field of adult education as well as youth work.

In the course of time, my résumé tended to develop: while I was still studying, a working student job I did in the field of marketing / admissions for bilingual kindergartens and schools throughout Germany shaped my interest. Among other things, I was responsible for assisting the parents in the admission processes for their children, and I also worked in cooperation with the respective institutions. The job challenged me and was a good balance to the university. I then worked as an intern at a training institute for pedagogical practice in the field of school-related social work. The school sector, as I noticed in retrospect, somehow did not let me go. Here I took on individual support lessons, was active in parenting work, and led a girls' group.

After defending my master's thesis on "Educational Consulting Action", I had a Master of Arts degree in my pocket and a year abroad in Australia followed. Great thing!

Back in Germany, the first "real" job followed relatively quickly, which I got as a pedagogue at a family service in the field of childcare. The focus here was on advising parents on childcare and their support in problematic life situations. I also traveled as part of my job and held parenting seminars. However, after 16 months at the desk and traveling, I noticed that I lacked direct personal work with people. I knew that if I didn't apply for pedagogical practice now, it would be difficult for me to get back into active pedagogical activity because of my desk-heavy work, which was my first full-time job after graduation. So I applied, for example, as an integration facilitator, as a pedagogical specialist for youth living and, among other things, as a teacher / social pedagogue in the Protestant boarding school, where I was then hired.

 

What were the last three things you did at work?

  • Managing the theater project group
  • Supervision
  • Departure of the students for vacation
     

Which age group or target group do you look after?

Children and adolescents aged 12-18 years, and their parents

 

Do you have the parenting plan?

In my opinion, there is no such thing as the education plan. Situation-specific action and flexibility are extremely important in dealing with / accompanying / supporting the children and young people. For me it is important never to think that I know everything about the person I am talking to. Rather, it should basically be about an understanding of the person, the problem, his / her environment and the specific situation. The way in which you approach your counterpart is decisive for the further course of the relationship with one another. In this regard, the solution-oriented approach is the optimal way for me to understand each other in every respect.

 

What constitutes a “good education” for you?

Of course, my professional field is about education. Much more important to me, however, is the concept of relationship. Because only through this can teaching / learning processes take effect and development processes can be actively promoted and authentically supported.

 

What can you apply to your job from your studies?

A fundamental empathy to deal with people and to assess one's own competencies are among other things skills that still shape my work today. During my studies I looked a lot for "applicable" contexts of knowledge, but only noticed at the end of this time which peculiarities of the respective course I was ultimately making use of. Learning to understand was an enormous enrichment for me that I wouldn't want to miss.

 

What was your nicest/most exciting experience?

In my professional field, the best thing for me is to observe individual developments. In addition, relationships of trust are built up that I would not want to miss. The feedback of one's own work can often be seen in small rudiments, which are however completely sufficient to be satisfied with yourself. In addition, a great team is also one of the important and beautiful things that make my day-to-day work so special for me. It's really a good job :)!

 

What challenges do you face in your job?

New events that cannot be planned or foreseen are always a challenge in my job. New situations arise from one moment to the next and can occur every day. Exciting (but at the same time demanding) events require a certain clarity, which must be preserved in all situations. Whether in the work with parents, in the context of an everyday boarding school or, for example, at our campus events - the perspective and foresight should never be missed.

 

Do you have any tips for young professionals?

Yes, I have some :) ... Even if maybe nobody can hear it anymore, internships and working student jobs are the best preparation for everyday life after graduation. Use the time to gain experience, make initial contacts and even get a hint of what might be of interest to you. You don't have to get married to your sideline jobs, but getting to know possible fields is a great thing!

This interview was conducted in April 2017.